Turkey beat South Korea 70-67 yesterday in the first warm-up ahead of the world basketball championships in Japan. South Korea held a 32-31 lead after the second quarter but fell behind at the start of the second half after allowing a jumper by Turkish forward Peker Kaya.
Turkey stepped up its defense and held a 58-54 lead in the third quarter. With 47 seconds left, Turkey trailed 66-67 but took back a one-point lead on a layup by Erdem Semih and completed the game with a three-point margin.
Turkey will meet Italy Saturday in the second warm-up of the five-nation tournament which also involves the United States and Lithuania at Jamsil Gymnasium.
The tournament ahead of the World Basketball Championships to be played in Japan from Aug. 19 to Sept. 3 features top NBA stars from the US.
South Korea, the only country which missed the championships in Japan, will have four matches while the others will engage in two matches each.
Team USA, top in the rankings of the Federation of International Basketball Associations, will play Lithuania Sunday and South Korea on Tuesday.
The US team is led by LeBron James of the Cleveland Cavaliers, Carmelo Anthony of the Denver Nuggets, Bruce Bowen of the San Antonio Spurs and Dwyane Wade of the Miami Heat.